− Several questioned
Several persons attached to the National Insurance Scheme (NIS) branch at Pouderoyen, West Bank Demerara (WBD), were taken into Police custody for questioning on Thursday, following a $6 million robbery in the wee hours of the morning.
The robbery occurred sometime around 02:30h and the ordeal lasted for almost an hour.
According to reports reaching Inews, six armed men entered the compound by cutting the chain-link fence in the rear, after which they attacked the two security guards on duty. The female and male guards were then bound and a service weapon, along with six rounds of ammunition was taken away from the male guard.
The perpetrators also disconnected the alarm system, as well as the telephone lines before forcing their way into the building by kicking down the door. While inside, the men torched the safe and bagged the money before making good their escape.
This news publication understands that the Police in D Division (West Demerara-East Bank Essequibo) are now working on the theory that it might have been an inside job, stating that someone from the inside might have divulged information to the perpetrators, since the money was only placed there the day before.
Inews was informed that the NIS Office is currently collecting payments from self-employed persons.
Meanwhile, among those taken into custody for questioning were the male security guard and three other employees attached to the NIS Pouderoyen Office.
Divisional Commander, Assistant Commissioner of Police Leslie James, said that investigators have questioned nine employees in connection with the robbery.
When this publication visited the scene, the office was closed for the day; however, many of the staffers remained in the building and were seen turning away pensioners who turned up to collect their monies.
On the other hand, while none of the neighbours knew of the robbery until daybreak, one woman recalled hearing screams during the morning hours, but thought it was a domestic violence disturbance.
“I woke up because I heard a screaming so I thought some man beating up his wife on the road. This person hollering and screaming and then all of a sudden it stopped, so I fall back to sleep. I did not get up, but then this morning my son told me that NIS was robbed and then I realised that it was the guard who was screaming,” the woman related.
She noted for the past 13 years she has been living there, this is the first time such an incident has occurred.
Meanwhile, investigations into the $6 million robbery are ongoing.